Chambers in the Cottage…

I’m the Witch, Initiate of the Wicca, lifelong neoPagan, healing-worker, priestess, clergy, and non-profit witchy volunteer, and sometimes tired ol’ witch. Wonder of wonders, I’m living a dream—I live alone in a Craftsman cottage with my books and my herbs and my stones and my magic…and my Bernina. I have friends and partners and kinfolk to visit with. Call me Deporodh, if you wish to wrap your tongue around the Scots Gaelic, or simply Deb.

Nigh 25 years ago, I was a silent partner in the embryonic Woodhart: A Witch’s Cottage K.C. Anton’s series of Woodhart businesses are long gone, as is K.C. (a stormy Pacific swept him away from Gold Beach, Oregon December 30, 2011).  I’ve recylced part of that name into my retirement support effort: One Witch’s Cottage, a source for Craft-related products…or as my tag line says: “Crafted in the Craft for Crafters.” Thus far, the Cottage has three chambers:

Stillroom — source of Sennight Spell-things

Stitchery — source of Clotho’s Cloaks

 

Circle — source of Goddess Gemstones

Clotho’s Cloaks

Clotho—the original Fate

Before there were three, there was one…read about Clotho (just a little) below. She spun, measured, and cut the threads of mortal lives. Textiles having been a part of my entire life, Clotho became important to me early in my journey, in my life, and in my Craft.

Cottage-made Clotho’s Cloaks have two styles

Caped Cowl
black gabardine cape $65 Pendleton® wool fabric

To purchase a specific available cape, visit Clotho’s Cloaks corner of the Etsy shop.

  • examples now & past

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Cowled Cloaks

To purchase a specific available cloak, visit Clotho’s Cloaks corner of the Etsy shop.

  • examples now & past

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Before One Witch’s Cottage, there was Woodhart… View a gallery of past cloaks and capes here.

About Cottage Cloaks…

>Clotho, the original Fate — In the way of triune Greek deities, first there was one. The Fate, named Clotho (Greek Klotho), she who spun the span of life for mortals and immortals alike. By Hellenic times, Clotho became a triune: one to spin, one to measure, and one to cut the life-thread—collectively called the Klothes or the Fates. Athena relied on Clotho for the lengths with which she wove, and, in turn, brought humankind the craft of weaving thread into fabric for garments. (Athena also brought humankind the craft of pottery…but that, as the Gaels say, is another story.

Me, I own tools and fiber-work of more than six generations of my matrilineal bloodline, and as a solitary, I used to describe myself a fiberwitch. It’s no wonder that a drop spindle in my teen hands carried me into a life of textile history and crafting.

Sennight Spell-things

What is your seven-o?
Green grow the rushes, oh!
Seven for the seven stars in the sky…

—Green grow the rushes, oh! traditional English counting folk song

Those seven stars (planetes, in the original Greek of Ptolemy) rule the days of the week, once known as a sennight or seven-night. Lunar reckoning followed the moon, and four sennights made a month (monath in Old English). Tools useful to the Wicca often focus on those seven-fold deific archetypes:

Sennight Seeing…

Ptolemy‘s Tetrabiblios documents “prescience by astronomy”—what we call astrology—as it existed approximately 2,000 years ago. In the simplest of explanations, astrology examines the position of the seven “wandering stars” (from which Greek phrase aster planetes we derive our word planets) against the annually rotating night sky of “fixed stars”—those celestial objects visible with the naked eye in a world void of significant light pollution. These “seven stars in the sky” in simple terms, are the distinct seven symbols scattered on a night sky of interlocking networked images equally symbolic—with positions and relationships all interpreted by the human observers.

These seven wandering stars, planets, are the rune-stones scattered across the starscape of the night skyI like to call it naked-eye astrology, with its seven wandering stars falling hither-thither against the celestial sea of fixed stars. Divination, at its root, is any means that we humans use to connect with conscious universe we inhabit, and how better than to gaze into a sky full of stars? Human eyes find patterns in everything; with practice, those patterns busy our bright eyes sufficiently to enable us also to perceive with our spirits—which is the essence of divination.

 

Goddess Gemstones

An unbroken string of beads…

Witchcraft tradition requires every woman in circle to wear a visible necklace, an unbroken (having no catch) length of beads. Most men choose also to honor the Lady in like fashion.

Gerald B. Gardner reported in Witchcraft Today that women wear a necklace in circle, “of any sort as long as it is fairly conspicuous.” He goes on to opine that the reason is that “the goddess always wore a necklace; … Astarte always wore one and was known as the Goddess of the Necklace, being otherwise ‘sky-clad’.” A footnote continues, “Diana of Ephesus wore a necklace of acorns; many Celtic goddess are mentioned as wearing them.

“At witch meetings every woman must wear one. When the ritual objects are being set out for a meeting, a number of strings of beads are put handy, so that if any witch hasn’t brought a necklace, she promptly borrows one for the occasion.”

Gardner omits the most famous of goddess’ necklaces, Brisingamen, worn by Freya, reputedly crafted of gold & amber by dwarven smiths. Freya’s necklace remains an distinctive attribute of this goddess of love. Perhaps this accounts in some part for the preference of many Wicca for circle necklaces crafted of amber, or sometimes amber & jet.

I choose to wear such a necklace rather than a chain when wearing a pendant, whether in circle or out. I’ve long hand-crafted such as gifts to my own initiates and others of the Craft. My fingers do not always know when to stop…and thus I now have many such necklaces, available to other Crafters.

Goddess Gemstone necklaces from One Witch’s Cottage

To view or buy any of these semiprecious stone necklaces, which are designed and hand-strung by the Witch (using silk bead-cord thoroughly beeswaxed for strength & longevity), visit the Etsy shop here.

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About the Witch…

of folklore & fairy tales…

Lavender’s blue, dilly, dilly, lavender’s green
When I am king,
dilly, dilly, you’ll be my queen.

Who told you so, dilly, dilly, who told you so?
’Twas my own heart, dilly, dilly, that told me so.

—ancient English folk tune

Seasons in my family home were orderly. The pagan roots of the Anglican church calendar were clear, in the February Fat Tuesday pancake supper we attended, in mum’s annual weaning off coffee for 40 days, in the annual egg dyeing and hunting and baskets full of “eggs.” Come fall, multi-colored Indian corn adorned our front door throughout October & November; an actual roast hen turkey took pride of place on the four-generation embroidered linen tablecloth (12 napkins!) that dated back most of a century. An evergreen wreath replaced the corn early in December; indoors only an advent wreath & calendar were present until the 24th, when our tree was set up & decorated before midnight mass. Every one of the Twelve Days saw another wee giftie for us beneath our tannenbaum, and our festive decor rarely departed before mid-January. Spring cleaning occurred well before Easter week, even if it meant putting the kids to work during spring break.

With that background, a steady diet of children’s classics—from Belgian Fairy Tales and East o’the Sun, West o’the Moon, to Tales from Shakespeare and The House at Pooh Corner—and being transplanted before puberty from a series of rental homes to a country property surrounded as much by pastureland & wildlife as by former homesteads with their attendant barns…of course I became a witch.